UTR Volunteer Jim Whitman is seated, holding a brown teddy bear. the bear is wearing a UTR t-shirt.

Volunteer Spotlight: Jim Whitman

April 23, 2024

Jim Whitman has been a United Through Reading volunteer for more than three years. Never one to shy away from a volunteer opportunity, Jim can be found sharing UTR program information and books at Yellow Ribbons, Operation Homefront events, Trunk or Treats, and many other events for the military community near Joint Base Lewis McChord and Camp Murray in Washington state. When asked why he and his wife, Rayann, volunteer with United Through Reading, Jim said,

“Volunteering with United Through Reading is our way of personally conveying our thanks and our support to the military who protect us, and recognizing the sacrifice of their families in doing so. I’ve already been richly rewarded – the time I was handing out books at a UTR event, a woman shared that her family had benefited from UTR services, and expressed sincere thanks. Made my day.”

Here’s more from Jim, on why he volunteers with United Through Reading:

It is my love for reading – and realizing how being an avid reader has helped me in so many ways – that I seek to share this gift with others:

I was unable to enlist in the military because of a physical limitation, but yet I can still serve those who protect and serve our nation.

I appreciate that it’s not just the one who serves, but their family who also makes this sacrifice on our behalf. If family members can be supported by United Through Reading during the deployment of their loved one, then that is something I can well do. I hope it’s of some solace to those serving overseas that while they are away, there are those of us who have a mind to care for their family – while they protect ours. It’s my way of serving our country, my gesture of appreciation, and my way of expressing my deep-felt thanks to all of our service members who stand between the wolf and door.

Thank you, United Through Reading for this opportunity!

Learn more about volunteering with United Reading.